Winter can be an exciting time filled with winter sports and activities, but it also poses some challenges for keeping your home warm and cozy. Under normal circumstances your furnace probably does a great job, but when old man winter sends winter storms your way things can change very quickly. Being prepared for winter storms and power outages is your best defense against potential winter problems. Follow these tips for keeping your family warm and safe this winter.
Prepare an Emergency Kit
When the power goes out and you suddenly find yourself without heat and water, you’ll be missing necessities that you’d normally take for granted. Gather the following items and store them in a convenient location of your home:
- Bottled Water: The Department of Homeland Security recommends one gallon of fresh water per person per day
- Flashlights & Batteries: Aim for at least two flashlights and several sets of batteries
- Baby Formula: Purchase enough ready-to-feed baby formula to last for at least three days
- Food and Snacks: Include easy-to-prepare foods that don’t require cooking
- Candles and/or Lanterns: You will need a source of light if the electricity goes down at night
Keeping Warm Without Your Heater
Losing the heat during a winter storm can seem like a catastrophe, but you can keep your family warm and safe by following these simple tips.
- Dress in Layers and Break Out the Fuzzy Slippers: Bundle up in several layers of your warmest clothes. Fleece lounging pants and jackets are famous for their warmth. Add hats, mittens and even a coat if the temperature drops below a comfortable level. Try several pairs of socks or slippers, as keeping your feet warm will make you feel warmer too.
- Pile on the Blankets: Dig out the extra blankets for cuddling on the couch or getting a toasty night’s sleep.
- Cover Windows and Doors: If your home is drafty, now is the time to cover windows and doors to prevent cold drafts. Use old blankets, a painter’s tarp or tablecloths if you have to. Blocking all cracks where cold air can enter will keep everyone more comfortable.
- Don’t try to heat your home with a propane stove. Propane ranges are made for cooking and are not designed for heating. Using one to heat your home can be extremely dangerous.
- Don’t run a generator inside the home. This will cause carbon monoxide to build up in your home. If you must run a generator make sure it is outside the home.
- Don’t use kerosene or propane space heaters in the home. These heaters are not designed for an enclosed area and increase the risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.
- Don’t use your grill inside the home. Unless you’re using a grill designed specifically to be used indoors, grilling inside is a fire hazard.
If your furnace suddenly quits working during a winter storm it may be due to blocked vents, but you don’t need to troubleshoot it on your own. Your HVAC contractor can determine the cause and get you up and running. At Buckeye Heating & Cooling, we provide emergency services. Contact us today to discuss our free estimates or to arrange for quality HVAC services you can count on.